Archive of ‘instructional technology’ category

Data driven design

Valuing data over design instinct puts metrics over users

Benek Lisefski August 13, 2019

https://modus.medium.com/data-driven-design-is-killing-our-instincts-d448d141653d

Overreliance on data to drive design decisions can be just as harmful as ignoring it. Data only tells one kind of story. But your project goals are often more complex than that. Goals can’t always be objectively measured.

Data-driven design is about using information gleaned from both quantitative and qualitative sources to inform how you make decisions for a set of users. Some common tools used to collect data include user surveys, A/B testing, site usage and analytics, consumer research, support logs, and discovery calls. 

Designers justified their value through their innate talent for creative ideas and artistic execution. Those whose instincts reliably produced success became rock stars.

In today’s data-driven world, that instinct is less necessary and holds less power. But make no mistake, there’s still a place for it.

Data is good at measuring things that are easy to measure. Some goals are less tangible, but that doesn’t make them less important.

Data has become an authoritarian who has fired the other advisors who may have tempered his ill will. A designer’s instinct would ask, “Do people actually enjoy using this?” or “How do these tactics reflect on our reputation and brand?”

Digital interface design is going through a bland period of sameness.

Data is only as good as the questions you ask

When to use data vs. when to use instinct

Deciding between two or three options? This is where data shines. Nothing is more decisive than an A/B test to compare potential solutions and see which one actually performs better. Make sure you’re measuring long-term value metrics and not just views and clicks.

Sweating product quality and aesthetics? Turn to your instinct. The overall feeling of quality is a collection of hundreds of micro-decisions, maintained consistency, and execution with accuracy. Each one of those decisions isn’t worth validating on its own. Your users aren’t design experts, so their feedback will be too subjective and variable. Trust your design senses when finessing the details.

Unsure about user behavior? Use data rather than asking for opinions. When asked what they’ll do, customers will do what they think you want them to. Instead, trust what they actually do when they think nobody’s looking.

Building brand and reputation? Data can’t easily measure this. But we all know trustworthiness is as important as clicks (and sometimes they’re opposing goals). When building long-term reputation, trust your instinct to guide you to what’s appealing, even if it sometimes contradicts short-term data trends. You have to play the long game here.

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more on big data in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=big+data

E-learning Technologies

Science and Technology Resources on the Internet E-learning Technologies
April L. Colosimo Associate Librarian McGill University Library & Archives
McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada  april.colosimo@mcgill.ca
https://journals.library.ualberta.ca/istl/index.php/istl/article/view/24/66
https://www.merlot.org/merlot/viewCompositeReview.htm?id=1347947
The technologies section covers: learning environmentslearning objectsactivitiesgaming, and building community. The tools were selected to potentially enhance synchronous teaching, asynchronous teaching or blended classrooms. The focus is on open or freely available tools but whenever a cost is involved it is indicated.

digital practices framework

Imagine if we didn’t know how to use books – notes on a digital practices framework

 

the 20/60/20 model of change. The idea is that the top 20% of any group will be game for anything, they are your early adopters, always willing to try the next best thing. The bottom 20% of a group will hate everything and spend most of their time either subtly slowly things down or in open rebellion. The middle 60% are the people who have the potential to be won or lost depending on how good your plan is

The top stream is about all the sunshine and light about working with others on the internet. It’s advantages and pitfalls, ways in which to promote prosocial discourse. The middle stream is about pragmatics. The how’s of doing things, it starts out with simple guidelines and moves forward the technical realities of licensing, content production and tech using. The bottom stream is about the self. How to keep yourself safe, how to have a healthy relationship with the internet from a personal perspective.

Level 1 – Awareness

Level 2 – Learning

Level 3 Interacting and making

Level 4 – Teaching

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more on digital literacy in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=digital+literacy

Nerves

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Note taking in classes

https://www.kqed.org/mindshift/48902/digital-note-taking-strategies-that-deepen-student-thinking

Mueller and Oppenheimer’s (2014) “The Pen is Mightier than the Keyboard” as well as Carter, Greenberg and Walker’s (2016) “Effect of Computer Usage on Academic Performance.” claim that students in lecture-style courses perform worse on assessments when allowed to use devices for note taking.

However, none of these studies question the teaching methods used in the classes themselves or whether teachers are recognizing the power of digital devices for students to create, share, connect and discover information.

Digital Organization and Content Curation

Much like students understand the concept of binders, notebooks and notes in the physical world, they need a similar system in the digital one. Whether working with dividers and subjects in a tool like Notability or sections and pages in OneNote, students need to build vocabulary to support how they house their learning.

Tagging this way not only helps students stay organized, but it could also help them to examine trends across courses or even semesters.

As a doctoral student, I use OneNote. First, I create a new digital notebook each year. Inside that, I add sections for each term as well as my different courses. Finally, my notes get organized into individual pages within the sections. When I can recall the precise location where I put a particular set of notes, I navigate directly to that page. However, on the numerous occasions when an author, vocabulary term or concept seems familiar but I cannot recall the precise moment when I took notes, then the search function becomes critical.

Multimodal Notes

With most tools (Notability, OneNote, Evernote, etc.), students can not only capture typed and handwritten notes but also incorporate photos, audio and even video. These versatile capabilities allow students to customize their note taking process to meet their learning needs. Consider these possibilities:

  • Students may take notes on paper, add photos of those papers into a digital notebook, synthesize their thinking with audio or written notes, and then tag their digital notes for later retrieval.
  • Students might use audio syncing — a feature that records audio and then digitally syncs it with whatever the student writes or types — to capture the context of the class discussion or lecture. When reviewing their notes, students could click or tap on their notes and then jump directly to that point in the audio recording.
  • Teachers might provide students with their presentation slides or other note taking guides as PDF files. Now, students can focus on taking notes — using any modality — for synthesis, elaboration, reflection or analysis rather than in an attempt to capture content verbatim.

In 1949, neuropsychologist Donald Hebb famously wrote, “Neurons that fire together wire together.”

Concept Mapping

One of the powerful components of digital note taking is that the pages never end, and a full page isn’t an artificial barrier to limit thinking. Students can work on an infinitely expanding canvas to include as much information as they need. For example, concept mapping tools such as Coggle or Padlet allow students to create networks of ideas using text, links, images and even video without ever running out of room. (my note to John Eller – can we renew our 201-2013 discussion about pen vs computer concept mapping?)

Visible Thinking Routines

Visible Thinking routines, sets of questions designed by researchers at Harvard’s Project Zero, encourage thinking and support student inquiry.

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more on note taking in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=note+taking

Gestalt and Visual Communication

Gestalt principles in User Interface design.

How to become a master manipulator of Visual Communication.

Jan 16, 2018 Eleana Gkogka

https://medium.muz.li/gestalt-principles-in-ui-design-6b75a41e9965

Great designers understand the powerful role that psychology plays in visual perception. What happens when someone’s eye meets your design creations?

Gestalt (form, shape in German) is a group of visual perception principles developed by German psychologists in 1920s. It is built on the theory that “an organized whole, is perceived as greater than the sum of its parts”.

four key ideas:

Emergence

People tend to identify elements first in their general outlined form. Our brain recognizes a simple, well-defined object quicker than a detailed one.

Reification

People can recognize objects even when there are parts of them missing. Our brain matches what we see with familiar patterns stored in our memory and fills in the gaps.

Multi-Stability

People will often interpret ambiguous objects in more than one ways. Our brains will bounce back and forth between the alternatives seeking certainty. As a result, one view will become more dominant while the other one will get harder to see.

Invariance

People can recognise simple objects independently of their rotation, scale and translation. Our brain can perceive objects from different perspectives, despite their different appearance.

Proximity

Elements arranged close to each other are perceived as more related than those placed further apart. This way different elements are viewed mainly as a group rather than as individual elements.

the Common Region principle

A good Common Region example would be the card UI pattern; a well defined rectangular space with different bits of information presented as one. Banners and tables are good examples as well.

Similarity

Elements sharing similar visual characteristics are perceived to be more related than those not sharing similar characteristics.

We can use the principle of Similarity in navigation, links, buttons, headings, call to actions and more.

Closure

A group of elements are often perceived to be a single recognisable form or figure. The Closure also occurs when an object is incomplete, or parts of it are not enclosed.

We can use the Closure principle in Iconography, where simplicity helps with communicating meaning, swiftly and clearly.

Symmetry

Symmetrical elements tend to perceived as belonging together regardless of their distance, giving us a feeling of solidity and order.

It’s good to use Symmetry for portfolios, galleries, product displays, listings, navigation, banners, and any content-heavy page.

Continuation

Elements arranged in a line or a soft curve are perceived to be more related than those arranged randomly or in a harsh line.

The linear arrangement of rows and columns are good examples of Continuity. We can use them in menus and sub-menus, lists, product arrangements, carousels, services or process/progress displays.

Common Fate

Elements moving towards the same direction are perceived as more related than those moving in different directions, or not moving at all.

We can use the Common Fate principle in expandable menus, accordions, tool-tips, product sliders, parallax scrolls and swiping indicators.

User Interface Design isn’t all about pretty pixels and sparkly graphics. It’s mainly about communication, performance and convenience.

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more on ID in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=instructional+design

5G vs WiFi6

https://www.cnet.com/news/wi-fi-6-will-upgrade-your-workhorse-wireless-network/

Wi-Fi 6, the consumer-friendly new name for the tech standard actually called 802.11ax,

wireless chip designer Qualcomm is betting big on Wi-Fi 6

“Cord cutting is real. What was typically one TV in the average home is now five or six different screens,” Patel said. “There’s a tremendous amount of content sourced through the home that wasn’t before. There’s a congestion problem.”

One of Wi-Fi 6’s biggest advances is OFDMA — orthogonal frequency division multiple access, if you must know — an efficiency-boosting technology purloined from mobile networks. Another is MU MIMO, short for multiple user, multiple input, multiple output. And then there’s 1024 QAM — quadrature amplitude modulation — which bumps up data rates by 30%.

  • Double the range — though Qualcomm has built-in mesh networking technology that’ll let multiple wireless access points cooperate to bathe your house in Wi-Fi radio signals.
  • Triple the speed — useful not just for watching 4K video but also for uploading from our phones.
  • Better reliability — good for avoiding video chats plagued by stuttering.

Qualcomm President Cristiano Amon says Wi-Fi 6 and 5G networks complement each other.
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more on 5G in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=5g

AR in the classroom

Getting Started with Augmented Reality in the Classroom

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more on AR and learning in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=augmented+reality+learning

Linda.com LinkedIn Microsoft Privacy

https://www.edsurge.com/news/2019-07-23-as-linkedin-learning-subsumes-lynda-com-library-groups-raise-privacy-concerns

The American Library Association said in a statement Monday that the planned changes to Lynda.com, which are slated to happen by the end of September 2019, “would significantly impair library users’ privacy rights.” That same day, the California State Library recommended that its users discontinue Lynda.com when it fully merges with LinkedIn Learning if it institutes the changes.

The library groups argue that by requiring users to create LinkedIn accounts to watch Lynda videos, the company is going from following best practices about privacy and identity protection to potentially asking libraries to violate a range of ethics codes they have pledged to uphold. The ALA’s Library Bill of Rights, for instance, states that: “All people, regardless of origin, age, background, or views, possess a right to privacy and confidentiality in their library use. Libraries should advocate for, educate about, and protect people’s privacy, safeguarding all library use data, including personally identifiable information.”

The change will not impact most colleges and university libraries or corporate users of Lynda.com services, who will not be required to force users to set up a LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn officials say that’s because colleges and corporations have more robust ways to identify users than public libraries do.

LinkedIn acquired Lynda.com in 2015 for $1.5 billion. The following June, Microsoft bought LinkedIn for $26.2 billion, the company’s largest-ever acquisition.

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more on privacy in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=privacy

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